- Posted October 23, 2012 by
San Diego, California
This iReport is part of an assignment:
FAMOSA SLOUGH FERAL CATS TERRORIZED BY LOOSE DOG
According to Famosa Slough.org. "the Famosa Slough was originally part of the Mission Bay wetland complex known as False Bay. Sediments fed this complex from the San Diego River and local watersheds."
Famosa Slough was gradually isolated from Mission Bay due to: the channeling of the San Diego River.
"In the 1970s, almost two acres of the Slough were filled (without permits) for the convenience of nearby construction projects. This aroused public outrage. Since then, the destruction of the Slough has been resisted due to the watchfulness of several local citizens groups, major environmental groups, and a number of concerned individuals," said Famosa Slough.org.
Many times, plans were announced to build a large condominium complex on the slough, but were deferred due to the environmental importance of the slough. Eventually the City of San Diego obtained the site and the Slough is now managed as a wetland preserve by the San Diego Park and Recreation Department with the help of the charity, Friends of Famosa Slough.
But Famosa Slough, as beautiful a natural place as it is, has also become a dumping ground for abandoned pets. I hike and bike ride through the area quite often and have come upon owner-less ducks, geese, and cats.
The feral cats are a particular concern, as the Slough is a popular bird nesting area. Feral cats are defined as: (1) "domestic animals adapted to living on their own in urban areas or in the wild; (2) introduced, and increasingly common, predators that are decimating bird and small animal populations in parks and wildlife areas; (3) homeless, lost, or abandoned pets that have a right to live on their own and whose effect on other wildlife can be minimized with a little help from their human friends," according to the California Dept. Fish & Game website.
Feral cats are especially prevalent along the Quivera Jetty along the San Diego River bike path. There are quite a few of them who are fed and taken care of by a group of animal lovers. Some of the cats will roam and come up by the Famosa Slough. That is how I was able to find "Blackie."
One night a few years back, I was having an outdoor BBQ and the smell of cooking meat must have enticed this scrawny black cat out of the Slough. I looked up and saw a very emaciated and starving little kitty looking hungry, so I came down and put out some tuna fish for the poor kitty. I saved some pieces of the BBQ and left them out that night. It broke my heart to see a cat suffering like that.
Soon enough and little by little, "Blackie" began to come around on a regular basis and I began to buy dry and wet cat food along with some treats. "Blackie" really liked my neighbor's husband, a pilot, and seemd to adore my teen-age son because she would run to them and rub against their legs.
She was nice enough to me and allowed me to scratch her head, for all the money I laid out on behalf of her large appetite. However, recently, the lady who lived downstairs moved in some thuggish boyfriend who brought along a boxer puppy.
I don't think they told the office about the boyfriend or the dog since they were very discreet and probably did not want to hassle with the stiff dog fees and extra rent they would have to pay. When I asked the management office about the dog, they claimed to know nothing about it.
Next I knew, that boxer was full grown and this lady's boyfriend began unleashing it to run outside their apartment since he was too lazy to walk it. The dog went crazy from being locked up in a small apartment all day long. It would tear up the grass lawn and began to run into the ivy where "Blackie" would hide during the day. This dog would terrorize the frightened cat and chase it around. I told the ghetto boyfriend that his dog better not hurt the neighborhood cat and he told me "no one cares about that stupid cat."
In mid-October, the dog was once again let loose around dusk, and again I told the two dog owners that it was "against the law" to have their dog off the leash. That's when Ms. Ghetto replied "shut the F--k up, for reals."
It is beyond my understanding why and how someone could take care and love a dog and then have such an insensitive, careless attitude about other pets. It seems like a sport to these two dog-owners to have their dog chase the feral cats near the Slough.
This morning, I was awakened by another commotion, barking and noise at 6:30 a.m. I looked out my window, and sure enough, there was Zeus the boxer, running like mad and barking. I got up and knew that today was the day I would go to Animal Control and ask to have both of these people citizen arrested for animal cruelty and a dog off the leash.
I went down to the county department of Animal Services and spoke with a Lieutenant who took my report. I was lucky that I has some pictures and witnesses to back up my story.
Now the cat is so fearful, it will not leave the ivy where it hides. I call and call to her but to no avail. I am hopeful that with this arrest., the punks who think they can get away with treating animals like this, will learn otherwise.Feral cats have a right to live in peace, free of being harrassed & abused by boneheads with big dogs.
I understand that feral cats can sometimes be a problem in coastal nature reserves. But "Blackie" has become a respectable and beloved neighborhood pet that everyone enjoys and to have her become little more than something an obnoxious dog gets to chase for sport and exercise is not right.
It is also a shame that people can own dogs but have so little between their ears and by that I mean, lack of brain cells, that they get themselves into a heap of trouble. It will be a cold day in hell before I let two dirt bags with a big dog hurt our sweet little Blackie."